The new Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 is here, and it’s really not a car you’d want to get on the wrong side of. Why? Well, how’s this for an opening salvo: 745bhp, and 715lb ft of torque.
Those figures (the latter being a little more than previously thought, and also pushing 1000 Nm) are all thanks to the new LT5 6.2-litre V8, whose supercharger has a whopping 52 per cent more displacement to play with compared to the blower on the Z06’s LT4 unit. Top speed is said to be “over 210mph.”
In fact, Chevrolet seems mighty keen to point out just how much better than the Z06 the new boss of the Corvette range is. We’re also told the standard ‘Low Wing’ aero package generates 70 per cent more downforce than the standard setup on the Z06, while adding the two-way-adjustable ‘High Wing’ into the mix reduces lift by 60 per cent more than the ‘Z07 Performance Package’.
Said ‘High Wing’ is available via the ZR1’s ‘ZTK Performance Package’, along with an angrier front splitter, Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres, plus specific chassis and Magnetic Ride Control damper fettling “for greater cornering grip.” ZTK-equipped cars generate a whopping 431kg of downforce.
Chevrolet has spent a lot of time making sure the ZR1 stays cool when driven hard (you might remember the Z06 having some rather well-publicised heat soak issues). It has 13 heat exchangers in total thanks to the addition of four radiators, an opening in the carbonfibre bonnet that the entire supercharger/intercooler assembly pokes through, and a completely new design for the front fascia to make sure enough air is channelled through to that LT5 V8.
If a supercharger assembly appearing to punch through the bonnet plus lairy bits of aero aren’t enough for you in terms of visual aggression, you might be interested in the Sebring Orange Design Package. Spec it, and you’ll have a car finished in ‘Sebring Orange Tintcoat’, complemented by orange brake callipers plus orange stripes on the rocker cover and splitter. On the inside, Sebring Orange cars also have orange seat belts, orange stitching and various bits of bronze aluminium trim. Lovely.
Want one? The 2019 ZR1 will go on sale in spring next year.